Third Generation (3G) Emerging Standards

Introduction: 3G is a generic term covering a range of future wireless network technologies, including WCDMA, CDMA2000, UMTS and EDGE.

3G combines high-speed mobile access with Internet Protocol (IP) based services. This doesn't just mean fast mobile connection to the World Wide Web - by liberating us from slow connections, cumbersome equipment and immovable access points, 3G will enable new ways to communicate, access information, conduct business and learn.

Learning Objectives: After completing this module and all of its activities, the student will be able to:

Industry Sources:

Instruction Notes:

3G is a short term for third-generation wireless, and refers to near-future developments in personal and business wireless technology, especially mobile communications. This phase is expected to reach maturity between the years 2003 and 2005.

The third generation, as its name suggests, follows the first generation (1G) and second generation (2G) in wireless communications. The 1G period began in the late 1970s and lasted through the 1980s. These systems featured the first true mobile phone systems, known at first as "cellular mobile radio telephone." These networks used analog voice signaling, and were little more sophisticated than repeater networks used by amateur radio operators. The 2G phase began in the 1990s, and much of this technology is still in use. The 2G cell phone features digital voice encoding. Examples include CDMA, TDMA, and GSM. Since its inception, 2G technology has steadily improved, with increased bandwidth, packet routing, and the introduction of multimedia. The present state of mobile wireless communications is often called 2.5G.

Ultimately, 3G is expected to include capabilities and features such as:

While 3G is generally considered applicable mainly to mobile wireless, it is also relevant to fixed wireless and portable wireless. The ultimate 3G system might be operational from any location on, or over, the earth's surface, including use in homes, businesses, government offices, medical establishments, the military, personal and commercial land vehicles, private and commercial watercraft and marine craft, private and commercial aircraft (except where passenger use restrictions apply), portable (pedestrians, hikers, cyclists, campers), and space stations and spacecraft.

Proponents of 3G technology promise that it will "keep people connected at all times and in all places." Researchers, engineers, and marketeers are faced with the challenge of accurately predicting how much technology consumers will actually be willing to pay for. (Recent trends suggest that people sometimes prefer to be disconnected, especially when on vacation.) Another concern involves privacy and security issues. As technology becomes more sophisticated and bandwidth increases, systems become increasingly vulnerable to attack by malicious hackers (known as crackers) unless countermeasures are implemented to protect against such activity.

Evaluation & Review Questions

The following review questions are also provided without answers in the Student Handout format.

1)      First Generation wireless was mostly _________.

Voice

2)      Which generation of wireless is digital with data, video, and multimedia?

Third Generation (3G)

3)      What is IMT-2000 (International Mobile Telecommunications-2000)?

The ITU initiative for 3G

4)      Name five 3G features.

1.  Global roaming

5.  Common radio interfaces

2.  Common worldwide spectrum

6.  Open architecture

3.  Variety of multi-mode terminal types

7.  Modular design

4.  Wide range of services

8.  Improved security

5)      Mark an X next to the IMT-2000 requirements that 3G systems must be in compliance with.

     X          Common radio interfaces

     X          Interoperability and roaming

     X          Common billing/user profiles

     X          Support circuit and packet data at high bit rates

                  Improved security

     X          Capability to determine geographic position of mobiles

                  Variety of multi-mode terminal types

                  Common worldwide spectrum


6)      Name three drivers for 3G.

1.  Growth of the mobile industry

4.  UMTS program in Europe and Japan

2.  Deregulation/competition in the telecom industry

5.  Technology advances

3.  Growth of the Internet

6.  Manufacturer-driven technology push

7)      What are the regional standards organizations working on developing for 3G?

Harmonization

8)      What has the Operators Harmonization Group (OHG) proposed for EGPP and 3GPP2?

Merging into one single body

9)      What does the World Administrative Radio Conference (WARC) do?

Sets standards for international frequencies

10)  What three modes of CDMA does the OHG proposal support?

Multi-carrier (MC)

Direct sequence (DS)

Time division duplex (TDD)

11)  What inter-frequency handoff is new to CDMA and saves transceiver costs?

UTRA

Third Generation (3G) Wireless Emerging Standards (AI-3GES)

Review Questions

1)      First Generation wireless was mostly _________.

 

2)      Which generation of wireless is digital with data, video, and multimedia?

3)      What is IMT-2000 (International Mobile Telecommunications-2000)?

 

4)      Name five 3G features.

5)      Mark an X next to the IMT-2000 requirements that 3G systems must be in compliance with.

                  Common radio interfaces

______      Interoperability and roaming

______      Common billing/user profiles

______      Support circuit and packet data at high bit rates

______      Improved security

______      Capability to determine geographic position of mobiles

______      Variety of multi-mode terminal types

______      Common worldwide spectrum


6)      Name three drivers for 3G.

7)      What are the regional standards organizations working on developing for 3G?

 

8)      What has the Operators Harmonization Group (OHG) proposed for EGPP and 3GPP2?

 

9)      What does the World Administrative Radio Conference (WARC) do?

 

10)  What three modes of CDMA does the OHG proposal support?

11)  What inter-frequency handoff is new to CDMA and saves transceiver costs?

 

12)  What is cdma2000?

 

13)  Name the two sub-technologies of UWC-136.

 
14)  UWC-136 uses a 1/3 reuse pattern.  What does this mean?
 

15)  What is the name of the technology that automatically adjusts the frequency plan for the additional channels and sites based on the desired quality of service?


Module References

Websites